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Start by going to chat.openai.com and then use an email address or a Google or Microsoft account to sign up. You need to create an account on the OpenAI website to log in and access ChatGPT, but it is free.
If you've never created an account, click 'Sign up' and follow the prompts to enter your information. OpenAI does require a valid phone number for verification to create an account on its website.
2. Accept the disclaimers from ChatGPT
Next, you may see a few disclaimers before you can chat with the AI chatbot. Read and accept them one by one to enter the chat.
3. Learn how to use ChatGPT
Once you've logged in to your OpenAI account on the ChatGPT side of the website, it's time to get to know the AI tool's window. Here's a breakdown of what you will see, with the image below as an example:
New chat & hide sidebar buttons: On the left-hand side of your screen, you'll see a button for 'New chat' that you can click on to start a fresh conversation at any time. ChatGPT remembers what was previously discussed in a conversation and will respond with context, so starting a new chat will create a new discussion without context.
Account: Clicking on your name on the bottom left of your screen will give you access to your account information, including settings, the option to log out, get help, and access FAQs from OpenAI. If you don't have ChatGPT Plus, you'll see an Upgrade button here to sign up for it.
Your prompts: The questions or prompts you send the AI chatbot appear in the middle of the chat window with your account photo or initials to the left.
ChatGPT's responses: Whenever ChatGPT responds to your queries, the logo will appear on the left. The Copy, Thumbs Up, and Thumbs Down buttons appear to the right of each response. You can copy the text to your clipboard to paste it elsewhere and provide feedback on whether the response was accurate. This process helps fine tune the AI tool.
Regenerate response: If you have issues getting a response in the chat or don't get a satisfactory answer, you can click on 'Regenerate response' to prompt ChatGPT to try again with a new reply for the latest prompt.
Text area: This is the section where you enter your prompts and questions.
ChatGPT version: OpenAI includes some fine print below the text input area, where you can read the disclaimer that, "ChatGPT can make mistakes. Consider checking important information." This section used to show the version of the ChatGPT model currently in use, but this has been discontinued.
Now that you know how to log in and access ChatGPT, it's time to start. You can ask the language model any burning questions you might have and see what answers you get -- the possibilities are literally endless. ChatGPT is a tool that can be applied in a huge range of projects, from software development to writing and onto translations, and so much more.
Type in any ChatGPT prompts in the text bar at the bottom of the page and click on the submit button to send your questions. The AI chatbot will then generate text to provide helpful answers to your queries.
If you'd rather access an AI chatbot without logging in to a website, you can use Bing Chat, which is not only free, but lets you use it without logging in, and it's built with GPT-4, a larger and newer model than the one used in ChatGPT, also from OpenAI. You can log in to Bing with a Microsoft account for extended conversations.
HuggingChat is another AI chatbot that doesn't require users to log in to access it, but it's not as effective as ChatGPT and Bing Chat.
If you don't want to download an app, smartphone users can use the AI-based tool from their mobile browser on their device.
The steps to use OpenAI's ChatGPT from your mobile browser are the same as above: go to chat.openai.com, log in, accept the terms, and start typing. The AI assistant will work just as it does when you access it from your computer.